Friends of Max Day in Hyderabad

Apr 1 2006

April first was All Fools Day in many places around the world. However, in Hyderabad India, it was Friends of Max day.

April first was All Fools Day in many places around the world. However, in Hyderabad India, it was Friends of Max day.

Thanks to the efforts of the core team of volunteers led by Dr Raghu, we had a wonderful evening with thirty families attending. This was the first time we attempted a gathering of this size in Hyderabad. The three meetings held earlier in Hyderabad were limited to six or seven families. However, with a newly established centre, the numbers have increased. The majority of patients are from the interiors and rural areas of the state. The turnout was quite impressive. Dr. Raghu, Pramod, Adisri, Usha and Sailaja made us proud and managed to reach out to many families. Voila! Like magic, we had a full house.

CARE hospital, where cardiologist Dr. Raghu consults, was gracious enough to let us use their auditorium and facilities. We printed and distributed copies of the transcript of the Q&A session from June 5th in Mumbai and FOM t-shirts. Afterwards, we held a delicious dinner in their canteen.

Dr. Raghunadharao, of NIMS, and his team, addressed many queries. Dr. Suresh Nukala, Oncologist from CARE Hospital, was there to lend his support. Everyone present was spontaneously sharing their experiences, thoughts and feelings. For patients it is always very special to interact with their physicians in an environment which is far removed from the formal, structured and therefore intimidating scenario of a consultation routine. That is what made this evening so special. Actually, it was our Dr. Raghu who led the way with his moving testimonial and presentation. He spoke about Max and his courageous battle against CML, GIPAP, Dr. Drucker and our own Dr. Shital Kiran, who has been responsible for educating so many of us about CML through the Yahoo group.

For me, it was emotionally very special. I was able to put faces to many familiar names for the first time. For example, meeting Parveen ji and her son, Yousuf, and of course, seeing Prasenjit after such a long time. Additionally, it was an incredible experience as many of the patients were meeting each other for the first time.

Thanks to all for coming and for making this event very special!

Viji Venkatesh